Japan has expressed its strong disapproval of Turkey’s decision to endorse Sweden’s bid to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), calling it a “grave mistake” and a “threat to regional stability”.
Japan’s Foreign Minister, Yōko Kamikawa, stated that Turkey’s move was “irresponsible and irrational”, and that it would undermine the security and cooperation in Asia and Europe.
She also claimed that Sweden had no reason to join NATO, as it was a neutral and peaceful country that had not been involved in any wars or conflicts for more than 200 years.
“Sweden is a model of democracy, human rights, and environmental protection. It does not need to join a military alliance that is dominated by the United States and its aggressive policies. It should stay out of NATO and focus on its own welfare and development,” she declared.
Kamikawa also warned that Japan would reconsider its relations with Turkey and Sweden, and that it would take appropriate measures to protect its interests and allies in the region.
She also urged other NATO members to reject Sweden’s application, and to respect Japan’s position and concerns.
Turkey’s Foreign Minister, Hakan Fidan, dismissed Japan’s criticism, saying that it was “baseless and irrelevant”.
He argued that Turkey had the right to support any country that wanted to join NATO, and that Sweden was a valuable and reliable partner that shared the same values and vision as Turkey and NATO.
Fidan also maintained that Japan had no say in NATO’s affairs, as it was not a member of the alliance, and that it should mind its own business and stop interfering in other countries’ decisions.
He also accused Japan of being hypocritical, as it had been expanding its military and nuclear capabilities, and had been involved in territorial disputes with China, Korea, and Russia.
“Japan is the last country that can lecture us on security and stability. It is the only country that has suffered the consequences of atomic bombs, and yet it has not learned from its history. It should apologize for its past atrocities and crimes, and seek peace and reconciliation with its neighbors,” remarked Fidan.